• New Patreon Tier and Early Access Content available. If you would like to support AVForums, we now have a new Patreon Tier which gives you access to selected news, reviews and articles before they are available to the public. Read more.

Which Magazine? - impartial or not?

quacker

Active Member
Among my research I included Which Magazine and their Which online service.

They test all tv's the same way, and according to their site, the LCD Panasonics were top rated. Indeed the Panny 26in TV's were rated higher than the 32ins and about 6th or 7th place came the highest rated Sony.

Biased? impartial? flawed testing? - I don't know but I assume they are not the be all and end all, but a (useful?) reference all the same.

JUst to confirm they rate LCD above plasma.

Any comments?
 

Boostrail

Distinguished Member
Among my research I included Which Magazine and their Which online service.

They test all tv's the same way, and according to their site, the LCD Panasonics were top rated. Indeed the Panny 26in TV's were rated higher than the 32ins and about 6th or 7th place came the highest rated Sony.

Biased? impartial? flawed testing? - I don't know but I assume they are not the be all and end all, but a (useful?) reference all the same.

JUst to confirm they rate LCD above plasma.

Any comments?

I gave up on which years ago. They no longer comment on objectives such as construction, reliability and full technical testing, but on subjectives such as ease of use, how nice it looks an above all a "viewer panel" whose idea of a good picture seems to consist of a soft foggy pastel rendition.
 

flygti

Active Member
I subscribe to which magazine but doubt their capability to judge high tech equipment. They rarely seem to agree with specialist reviewers.

I'd trust them with a washing machine and other low tech items but that's about it.
 

motr

Active Member
A mate of mine owns a small hifi shop in Peterborough and deals in mainly more expensive stuff these days and I used to go in there and say that What Hifi? said this and that......and in the end he said to me 'look, they seem to review many products by the same companies month after month and who also spend a large amount of money on advertising in their mag every month. They are not going to do too much slagging off'.

I have learned that most reviews have to be taken at face value, whether it be an independant research from Which or a bunch of people who watch the best tvs week in and week out. Its a bit like cars, if you are driving around in Porsches, Ferraris, Lambos and the like quite often, a Daihatsu is never going to really favour too well.

Since finding this website, I have realised that 'real' views count for so much more aswell as looking and seeing the stuff in action before you buy.
 

Curly99

Distinguished Member
A mate of mine owns a small hifi shop in Peterborough and deals in mainly more expensive stuff these days and I used to go in there and say that What Hifi? said this and that......and in the end he said to me 'look, they seem to review many products by the same companies month after month and who also spend a large amount of money on advertising in their mag every month. They are not going to do too much slagging off'.

I have learned that most reviews have to be taken at face value, whether it be an independant research from Which or a bunch of people who watch the best tvs week in and week out. Its a bit like cars, if you are driving around in Porsches, Ferraris, Lambos and the like quite often, a Daihatsu is never going to really favour too well.

Since finding this website, I have realised that 'real' views count for so much more aswell as looking and seeing the stuff in action before you buy.
I have heard similar myself..though only rumour and probably difficult to prove.

Curly
 

motr

Active Member
I have heard similar myself..though only rumour and probably difficult to prove.

Curly


Indeed Curly. No magazine will ever admit to it and you wouldn't expect them too. I guess in the end you just get to realise things.
 

biggiegc

Active Member
I can't really see an issue with them, that aside I wouldnt take them as gospel..it is probably best to go with a few suggestions before you buy; try a review off here for instance!
 

sejjie

Active Member
Might be impartial but doesnt make their reviews any more competent.

Magazines such as which make too many vague comments in their reviews such as "excellent colour reproduction" which hints that they are not testing the sets rigorously. If you want examples on how hdtv reviews should look like, take a look at www.* .

Thats not to say reviews in those magazines arnt useful, they give a good general comparative idea of the available TVs.
 

motr

Active Member
Might be impartial but doesnt make their reviews any more competent.

Magazines such as which make too many vague comments in their reviews such as "excellent colour reproduction" which hints that they are not testing the sets rigorously.


But any review should only be a guideline.
 

Dorset Dave

Active Member
I agree with "Which" magazine's comments about Panasonic. I have the tx26"lxd70 which is superb and was recently voted the best 26" tv by a leading hi-fi magazine. "Which" has always had a reputation for being impartial in their findings for the consumer and long may it continue to provide this service.
 

quacker

Active Member
A mate of mine owns a small hifi shop in Peterborough and deals in mainly more expensive stuff these days and I used to go in there and say that What Hifi? said this and that......and in the end he said to me 'look, they seem to review many products by the same companies month after month and who also spend a large amount of money on advertising in their mag every month. They are not going to do too much slagging off'.

I have learned that most reviews have to be taken at face value, whether it be an independant research from Which or a bunch of people who watch the best tvs week in and week out. Its a bit like cars, if you are driving around in Porsches, Ferraris, Lambos and the like quite often, a Daihatsu is never going to really favour too well.

Since finding this website, I have realised that 'real' views count for so much more aswell as looking and seeing the stuff in action before you buy.

Hmmm funny enough I purchased What Car? magazine last week as thinking about upgrading my little Micra - I was looking at the super-mini category (other half has a Zafira so small car does me - she can ferry kids in hers lol) and the Daihatsu scores very well in there - actually higher than Toyota Yaris & Ford Fiesta among others. I find this even harder to believe lol.
 

technoflare

Active Member
Although I have not seen it myself, the recent review of the 40XF from Toshiba gave it a 37% and a dont buy this rating. This is the same set that the specialist magazines have given rave reviews too.
 

Spiderkid

Well-known Member
I had a quick scan through What Hi-Fi's 'buyers guide' which reviews over 1,400 products and couldn't find a single rating of 2 stars or below.

That could be because they only include kit with a minimum rating, but I think it's more likely that they simply don't give out 'bad reviews'. Look through any issue and you'll be hard pressed to find a single rating of 2 or less stars. Which effectively means that their 'scoring range' is between 3 and 5 stars.. just 3 degrees of value judgement! It's no wonder every man and his dog's Mp3 player has a 'What Hi-Fi 5 stars' rating badge.

I've got a simple theory that higher ratings sell more magazines because it's effectively providing a level of false security for people who are uncertain about spending '£***' on their new TV, DVD Player, speakers etc. If they look in a magazine and see that it's got 4 or 5 stars that provides some much needed reassurance and comfort that they're making the 'right decision' (I know, I've done it myself). If a magazine genuinely rating products according to their technical merritt and gave a larger number of lower ratings, people wouldn't buy it, because they don't want to be told that their 'bargain' surround sound system from Richer Sounds is only worthy of 2 stars.

Secondly a higher number of good ratings must surely help their sponsorship > income > profit.

Finally they get a hell of a lot of 'free advertising' by having their magazine name and 5 star logo slapped all over every kind of av product imaginable.
(In the same way that newspapers like the Sun get a lot of free advertising by endorsing crap films with innane statements like 'great fun for all the family')

I don't think it's a mass conspiracy, I just thing they're running a business and so their opinions are compromised. Whether or not Which magazine provides a better guide as it doesn't have the same financial incentive is another question..

Overall though in the last few years we've seen a massive rise in the availability of consumer reviews on the internet, and they tend to provide the most honest and often reliable guide, especially places like amazon where you can see tens and even hundreds of reviews for the same product. And of course.. places like this! :D
 

quacker

Active Member
The only problem I find with user reviews is that many people admit they've made an error and just spent their life savings on a pile of crap! as an example of this, go onto ebuyer's site and read the user reviews for the latest LCD HD ready TV's for under £300 and see how they all have the same 5* review as the magazines saying the best picture ever seen (or similar) all the giants must be shaking in their boots:hiya:
 

The latest video from AVForums

Guardians of the Galaxy Xmas Special, Strange World, Bones and All, and Cabinet of Dr Caligari in 4K
Subscribe to our YouTube channel
Support AVForums with Patreon

Top Bottom